The Full Moon phase is a primary phase of the Moon, along with the New Moon, the Third and the First Quarter. It is the third and most spectacular phase.
This phase is studied from ancient times, and it has a significant impact on our lives and nature. Every Full Moon has a specific name given by our ancestors, who used it to track time but not only.
Let's find out more about this breathtaking phase, how it influences us, how it occurs, and when we can see it.
What is the Full Moon Phase?
Basically, the Full Moon phase lasts only for a couple of moments, the period when the sunlit part of the Moon is at 100%. On some parts of the planet, the actual Full Moon occurs during the day.
However, the Moon appears Full a day before and a day after this moment because it's illumination is at more than 98%. It is hard to distinguish between the beginning of a Waning Gibbous Moon or the last stage of a Waxing Gibbous Moon and the Full Moon.
What does the Full Moon symbolize?
From ancient times people used the Full Moon and the Lunar calendar to track seasons. The Native Americans are responsible for the names of the Full Moons we are still using today. The names are not given just for the actual Full Moon but for the entire lunar month.
Every Full Moon has its specific energy. During a Full Moon, our emotions, feeling, and dreams are amplified. Because the Moon and the Sun are opposed, a lot of tension and friction is caused. For some people, it is a time of balanced energies.
The Full Moon doesn't affect only people and animals. The Earth is also influenced by it. A Full Moon is responsible for bigger ocean tides and extreme meteorological conditions.
The Difference Between Supermoons and Micromoons
There are two types of Full Moons: the Supermoons and the Micromoons.
When a Full Moon coincides or is near its perigee ( when the Moon is closest to Earth), a Supermoon occurs.
But when the Full Moon is close to the apogee ( its furthest point to Earth), a Micro-moon happens.
The Difference Between a Full Moon and a Supermoon
We can see a Full Moon when the Moon and the Sun are on opposite sides of the Earth. When this happens, the Moon is completely illuminated and visible from Earth in its complete form.
A Super moon is not that different. The Moon orbits the Earth in an ellipse way, which means at some point, the Moon's center will be close or farther from the Earth.
The closest point is called perigee and the further point apogee. When the full Moon coincides or occurs near to perigee, a Supermoon occurs. It seems slightly bigger and brighter. Usually, the difference is so small it's hard to notice it with bare eyes.
The Full Moon Calendar for 2020
This is the list for all the thirteen Full Moons which will occur in 2020, with the Supermoons and the Lunar eclipse included:
- January 10 – 2:21 pm / 14:21 Wolf Moon Lunar Eclipse
- February 9 – 2:33 am / 02:33 Full Snow Moon
- March 9 – 1:48 pm / 13:48 Super Worm Moon
- April 7 – 10:35 pm / 22:35 Super Pink Moon
- May 7 – 6:45 am / 06:45 Flower Supermoon
- June 5 – 3:12 pm / 15:12 Full Strawberry Moon
- July 5 – 12:44 am / 12:44 Full Buck Moon
- August 3 – 11:59 am / 11:59 Full Sturgeon Moon
- September 2 – 1:22 am / 01:22 Full Corn Moon
- October 1 – 5:05 pm / 17:05 Full Hunter's Moon
- October 31 – 9:49 am / 09:49 Full Hunter's Moon
- November 30 – 4:30 am / 04:30 Full Beaver Moon
- December 29 – 10:28 pm / 22:28 Full Cold Moon
What are the Full Moons of 2021?
Curious about when can you see the Full Moons in 2021, and what are the names they are called? Check the list below:
- 28th of January - Full Wolf Moon
- 27th of February - Full Snow moon
- 28th of March - Full worm moon
- 27th of April - Full Pink Moon
- 26th of May - Full Flower Moon
- 24th of June - Full Strawberry Moon
- 24th of July - Full Buck Moon
- 22nd of August - Full Sturgeon Moon
- 20th of September - Full Corn moon
- 20st of October - Full Hunter's Moon
- 19th of November - Full Beaver Moon
- 19th of December - Full Cold Moon
The New Moon occurs when the Earth, Moon, and the Sun are aligned with the Moon in the middle. So, the Sun illuminates half of the Moon we cannot see.
The Full Moon - The Moon, Earth, and Sun are almost aligned, but the Moon is on the opposite side of the Earth so that we can see the entire sunlit part of it.
The First Quarter and the Third Quarter are when we can see half of the illuminated part and half of the Moon's shadow part. This is why generally, these phases are known as Half Moon. We can only see half and half because the Moon is at a 90-degree angle concerning the Earth and Sun.
The Moon is Waxing crescent after the new Moon when the sunlit part increases, but less than a half. The Waxing gibbous is when the sunlit portion of the Moon is now more than a half and still growing.
After the maximum phase of a Full Moon, the light starts decreasing, called the Waning gibbous phase. This phase lasts until the Third Quarter.
Following the Third Quarter, lights wane until the New Moon, when it's completely gone. This is the Waning crescent phase. What is the Moon phase today? Find out here. If you are curious about the Moon phase of tomorrow, check this out. What was the Moon's phase yesterday? Find out here.
Did you know?
- The most spectacular time to watch the Moon is at moonrise. If you look at the east while the Sun is setting, when the Moon is close to the horizon, it will look more considerable than the surroundings. Because of the Earth's atmosphere, it will appear orange or yellow for a couple of minutes.
- There is a very high chance for rain and storms on the days after a New or Full Moon.
- When the Moon is Full, it's the best time for shrimping and crabbing.
- In folklore, the ideal time to accept a marriage proposal or a job recommendation, or any significant changes or opportunities in your life is during the Full Moon.
- Another folklore advice is not to wash clothes for the first time during a full moon because they will not last long.
- Recent studies showed that more babies are born during a Full Moon. It's not known for sure why, but the numbers don't lie.
- Some sea turtles are using the Full Moon and the bigger tides to lay their eggs.
- A lunar month has about 29.5 days, and it is the period it takes to complete a cycle from New Moon to the next. A lunar month is longer than the number of days it takes to orbit the Earth. Because the Earth is continually moving around the Sun, the Moon travels more than 360 degrees to complete a cycle.
- The Moon travels around the Earth at a distance of 1,423,000 miles (2,290,000 kilometers) with an average speed of 2,288 miles per hour (3,683 kilometers per hour)
- The surface of the Moon is approximately the size of Africa.